AFTER “the call”



I’m interrupting my regularly scheduled blog to appear this week in my agency’s Blog Hop. If you click here you’ll see the original post and the publishing story of many wonderful authors, all of whom are represented by the Seymour Agency. Click here and you can read my previous post, “Before the Call” and here to read my post “My Call.”

It’s a fairy tale story. Isn’t it? I worked hard, prayed for patience, and had finally found a NY literary agent. Except fairy tales sometimes take strange twists and turns.

  • At my agent’s urging, I kept writing. I wrote a lot of proposals in addition to completing the manuscripts that I mentioned on my previous posts.
  • Although Mary Sue accepted me based on my romantic suspense manuscript, she encouraged me to try my hand in Christian fiction.
  • So I wrote 2 books that were contemporary Christian romances. We had a lot of interest from the big publishers, but no one offered a contract.
  • And one night I received an email from Mary Sue asking me to write Amish fiction. I told her no. It was the first time I’d refused a request! But within 30 minutes, she’d convinced me to give it a try.
  • Since that night, we’ve sold 7 books to Zondervan, 2 to Abingdon, and 6 to Harvest House. All Amish. And all the ones which have released have been best sellers. Falling to Pieces won the 2012 ACFW mystery of the year award.
  • I continued teaching full-time, which meant most of my writing took place from 5-7 in the morning, from 7-11 at night, and on weekends.
  • 18 months ago, I resigned from teaching and began to write full-time.

It hasn’t been a perfect journey, but it has been an interesting and rewarding one. There is no telling what God has in store next. I know that I’m grateful that I’m able to do what I love–telling stories of God’s grace-romances, mysteries, novellas. I enjoy them all. And I’m grateful for the fact that I’m represented by a top-notch agency.




28 thoughts on “AFTER “the call”

  1. Judy Burgi January 11, 2013 at 6:34 am

    So happy that Mary Sue encouraged you to write Amish fiction. I have loved all the books that I have read of yours so far. I have read three and on my fourth one right now. I will be starting Material Witness when I’m finished with A Promise for Miriam. I can’t wait!!


    • vannettachapman January 11, 2013 at 10:39 am

      Isn’t it a funny story? I learned to trust my agent!

  2. Jerrilyn(Jerri) January 11, 2013 at 9:04 am

    I have enjoyed all of your books and meeting you. I am looking forward to your future books.

  3. Melissa L. January 11, 2013 at 9:05 am

    So glad she convined you to write Amish fiction. I have enjoyed reading all of your books. Prayers for continued success.

    • vannettachapman January 11, 2013 at 10:40 am

      I appreciate your prayers, Melissa.

  4. kathibud5038 January 11, 2013 at 9:35 am

    Vannetta I enjoyed your story. I ‘m so glad you changed your mind on writing Amish fiction. We the readers love your books. God has the right plan for you know doubt about it. Wishing you continued success, and hoping to see you in 2013 thanks for all your books and contest, most of all your friendship. God’s Blessings!

    • vannettachapman January 11, 2013 at 10:40 am

      Thank you, Kathi! And you’re right, it’s God’s plan … because it certainly wasn’t mine. lol.

  5. mariannebarkman January 11, 2013 at 9:39 am

    Thank you for starting on the writing journey, and working through the obstacles for my benefit. Thanks for sharing your “call” experiences.

    • vannettachapman January 11, 2013 at 10:41 am

      You’re so welcome, Marianne. Thanks for commenting!

  6. rdjohnson57 January 11, 2013 at 12:23 pm

    You are such a wonderful inspirational writer – We Love all of your books – & we so love reading about the Amish!!! Keep doing what GOD has called you to do & May GOD continue to bless you!!!
    Debbie Johnson

  7. mary ellen ashenfelder January 11, 2013 at 2:42 pm

    I am a big fan of your writing. Wishing you the best in your writing journey in the future.God always knows the best time/place for things to happen.

    • vannettachapman January 11, 2013 at 4:21 pm

      You are right about God, Mary Ellen. 🙂

  8. Nancee January 11, 2013 at 4:06 pm

    You had told me your story once before, but I loved reading about it again. Vannetta, you are a fabulous author, and you deserve the best of everything in life. God has blessed you with the gift of sharing not only your writing Amish fiction, but also sharing the gift of His grace through your writing. Every book of yours that I have read has held a blessing! Thank you so much for persevering in this industry! Best wishes on the release of “A Home for Lydia.” I can’t wait to read it!

  9. vannettachapman January 11, 2013 at 4:22 pm

    Thank you for commenting, Nancee. It’s always so good to hear from you!

  10. Tonya Kuper January 11, 2013 at 9:34 pm

    You are writing full time!!! It’s amazing how a bumpy road can lead to great blessings! Love this story, V!

  11. Maxie Lloyd-Hamilton Anderson January 11, 2013 at 10:08 pm

    Vannetta, I am so glad you listened to her advise about writing about the Amish. I love your books. And, I am so very happy about getting to meet you at Conroe, TX. It was so exciting. Hope it will happen again some day. GOd bless you and your writing. Hoping to someday to own all of your books!

    • vannettachapman January 12, 2013 at 10:36 am

      Hi Maxie! I loved coming to Conroe. Thanks for commenting.

  12. Donita Corman January 11, 2013 at 10:09 pm

    I’m glad you are writing..I so enjoy reading your books and I just lent out some of your books to my friend who is having surgery this coming week…you are a blessing

    • vannettachapman January 12, 2013 at 10:36 am

      Thanks so much for lending, Donita. Every time someone lends a book, I get a new reader. 🙂

  13. Juanita Cook January 11, 2013 at 10:40 pm

    I am so glad that you are writing Amish fiction. I love reading it and love your books. So glad I found the Amish fiction in my later life. I would have missed so much if I had never found you and your wonderful books.

    • vannettachapman January 12, 2013 at 10:37 am

      Thanks, Juanita. Glad you’re enjoying my stories.

  14. Jackie Tessnair January 12, 2013 at 12:41 am

    I really enjoyed your story.I am so glad your agent got you to change your mind.I love your amish books.Thanks so very much for all you do.

    • vannettachapman January 12, 2013 at 10:37 am

      Jackie, she’s a good agent! And thank you …

  15. janie January 13, 2013 at 2:00 pm

    I have enjoyed reading this blog! Vannetta, you are the first Amish author I have met in person, and I am just so happy for have taken off- just so awesome! Congrats and keep up the wonderful writing you are doing!

    • vannettachapman January 13, 2013 at 2:06 pm

      Thank you, Janie. Hope to see you again soon. Blessings.

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